What’s the Best Fishing Hat?

Advice on choosing the best fishing hat for how and where you fish.

For almost every angler, a fishing hat is a must-have for a long day on the water…and not just because you might think your favorite fishing hat gives you a boost of luck. Whether you’re a superstitious angler or not, a fishing hat will serve you well by shading your eyes and protecting you from the sun.

There’s no one definition of what a fishing hat is, but there are some qualities that you should look for when you’re on the market for a hat that you want to take on your next fishing trip. Primarily, you want a hat that protects you from the sun. Because it can get windy on the water, you need a hat that’s sturdy and will stay on your head. You also want a hat that’s lightweight and keeps you cool while protecting you from the sun. And of course, you should get a hat that you will enjoy wearing. (One angler actually used his hat to help him land a sailfish, but most of us won’t be using our fishing hats for that.)

Best Fishing Cap: Repyourwater Silhouette Trio

Best Straw Fishing Hat: Huk Camo Patch Straw Hat

Best Fishing Hat With Sun Protection: Kastking Sol Armis Boonie Hat

Best Cold-Weather Fishing Hat: Van Caro Warm Baseball Cap

Best Kid’s Fishing Hat: Home Prefer Kids UPF50 Safari Sun Hat

Best Budget Fishing Hat: Bass Pro Shops Mesh Cap

Features To Consider When Shopping For a Fishing Hat

Comfort, functionality, and style—in that order—are the most important considerations. Why? A hat that’s uncomfortable is a hat that you’re not going to wear. A hat that feels good but doesn’t offer the protection that you need is useless. A hat that doesn’t look good on you? Well, that’s a personal decision. You may not care, or it may matter.

Do you want a basic ball cap style fishing hat?

There are many different kinds of hats that will work for fishing, but for many anglers, the only hat they really need is a baseball cap. A baseball cap, with its long bill, provides plenty of shade over your eyes. They also tend to fit well with sunglasses. And if style matters to you, it’s a classic look and a good choice for an angler who has an aversion to frills.

Baseball caps do have some drawbacks that you should be aware of when used for fishing. Baseball caps do not offer any sun protection for your neck or shoulders, though this can be remedied with a neck gaiter or a bandana. Baseball caps are also prone to flying off in high wind conditions. If you’re fishing on a windy day, cinch your cap down tightly. Turn it backwards when you’re under way on a boat.

Best Fishing Cap: RepYourWater Silhouette Trio

Fishy Look

The RepYourWater Silhouette Trio depicts three trout. RepYourWater

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The RepYourWater Silhouette Trio is a great fishing cap for freshwater anglers, especially trout fishermen. The hat depicts three trout as seen from above. A trucker-style mesh design keeps your head cool when you’re on the water. Also, Rep Your Water donates 3% of every purchase to important conservation initiatives. Are you a saltwater angler? The company also offers a hat with a tarpon logo.

Do you fish in very hot weather?

Another popular style of fishing hat is a straw hat. These hats are popular right now, though they harken back to simpler times reminiscent of Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn.

A straw hat is definitely a retro pick for a fishing hat, but don’t be fooled—they’re excellent for hot-weather fishing. The wide brim hat provides plenty of sun protection for face, ears, and neck. The straw material is lightweight and allows air movement underneath, keeping you cool on hot days. These hats can come off in high winds because of their large brims, but a chin strap will prevent it from flying away.

Best Straw Fishing Hat: Huk Camo Patch Straw Hat

Straw Powered

The Huk Camo Patch Straw Hat harnesses all of straw’s best qualities. Huk

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The Huk Camo Patch Straw Hat is made out of lightweight straw that will keep you cool, and a wide brim that shades your face, head, and neck. This straw fishing hat is made with sun-blocking +30 UPF materials, and the underside has a water camo pattern.

Is sun protection a major consideration?

One of the most important features of a fishing hat is protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Pay attention to the UV rating of the fishing that you’re considering purchasing. A good rule of thumb is to go for a hat that is rated at least to UPF 35.

Solar hats are typically very lightweight. They are made out of synthetic material. Make sure that a solar fishing hat has several key qualities beyond UV protection. They should be moisture-wicking and fit well. Look for a sun fishing hat that has more UV protection than just on your face. Protect your neck as well.

Best Fishing Hat With Sun Protection: KastKing Sol Armis Boonie Hat

Stay Cool

The KastKing Sol Armis Boonie Hat offers superb sun protection and is available in nine color styles. KastKing

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The KastKing Sol Armis Boonie Hat has UPF 50 sun protection along with mesh venting to keep you cool. A bungie-style drawcord ensures a good fit. A moisture-wicking headband will help keep sweat out of your eyes. If you spend a lot of time fishing in the sun, this is a solid choice.

Do you fish in the winter?

Fishing hats are generally made for warm weather, but many anglers fish in cool or even cold conditions. Hats made specifically for sun protection don’t cut it in those conditions—but a cold-weather fishing hat should still protect your eyes from the sun’s glare. Look for a hat that provides insulation for your head and ears, as well as a visor to keep the sun out of your eyes.

Best Cold-Weather Fishing Hat: Van Caro Warm Baseball Cap

Winter Ready

The Van Caro Warm Baseball Cap is ideal for cold weather anglers. Van Caro

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The Van Caro Warm Baseball Cap combines the warmth of a winter hat with the sun-protection of a baseball cap, making this a perfect option for any cold-weather angler. The hat has a cotton-polyester outer with a warm faux-fur lining. The hat is warm and windproof. The cap’s visor is simple but large enough to effectively keep the sun out of your eyes. There are warm flaps that can extend down over your neck and chin for especially frigid days, or be pinned up on warmer ones.

Are you shopping for a kid’s fishing hat?

Are you teaching your kid how to fish? If not, you should be. If you are, make sure your kid is equipped with the right fishing apparel to be comfortable on the water. Make this happen by getting your little one the right fishing hat.

Kids are often especially sensitive to the sun, so the hat should offer good sun protection. Make sure it fits well, and has a design that your kid will enjoy. That will make fishing even more appealing.

Best Kid’s Fishing Hat: Home Prefer Kids UPF50 Safari Sun Hat

Fun but Sturdy

Look out fish! The Home Prefer Kids UPF50+ Safari Sun Hat is available in 10 patterns, from sharks and whales to crabs and seahorses. Home Prefer Kids

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The Home Prefer Kids UPF50+ Safari Sun Hat is a fun, functional kid’s fishing hat. It’s a bucket-style sun hat rated to block 98% of UV rays. The brim is wide and will keep the sun out of your kids eyes. The hat is lightweight but durable. It comes in an array of fun water-themed and kid-friendly patterns.

Best budget fishing hat: What you get for under $6

If you’re ok with a simple, no-frills design, you should have no problem finding a cheap fishing hat. You will be able to find affordable ball-cap style hats, but decent straw hats aren’t as cheap. A budget fishing hat might not have a cool design or offer extra features like shade flaps, but it should still keep the sun out of your eyes when you’re on the water.

Best Budget Fishing Hat: Bass Pro Shops Mesh Cap

Classic

The Bass Pro Shops Mesh Cap provides eye shade and ventilation at a very low price. Bass Pro Shops

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The Bass Pro Shops Mesh Cap is one of the most affordable fishing hats on the market today. The Bass Pro Shops logo printed across the front features a jumping largemouth bass. The back of the cap is made out of mesh, which will keep you cool and comfortable on hot days.

Best Fishing Hat FAQ: People Also Ask

Who makes the best fishing hats?

Many companies make high-quality fishing hats. Consider purchasing a hat from one of your favorite fishing gear companies. Odds are that their hats are of a similar quality as their other outdoor gear, and will be designed for fishing.

What kind of fishing hat won’t blow off my head?

Baseball caps are liable to blow off of your head during heavy wind. One trick you can use is to wear it backward so that the visor doesn’t catch the wind. Fishing bucket hats and sun hats with neck-straps will stay on a little bit better, so long as you cinch the straps down tight.

What is the best color for a fishing hat?

A light color will reflect the sun better and keep you cooler. Darker colors will absorb more heat (which is fine if you’re fishing in cool or cold weather). A brim with a dark underside won’t reflect light back into your eyes, which will help you see into the water on especially sunny days.

A final word on shopping for fishing hats

There are many different types of fishing hats on the market today. Whether you’re looking for a bucket hat, a straw hat, or a baseball hat, get a fishing hat that you enjoy wearing. Protect your eyes and skin from the sun, and fish on.